These days, more and more people are getting booted out of Amazon because they’re there simply to sell a product, rather than grow a brand. Amazon is no longer looking for people that are just there to make a quick buck, but for brands that will uphold their reputation.
There’s one way surefire way to not get kicked of Amazon--by growing a brand name that will be of value to consumers, like the Apple brand.
Apple is one of the biggest brands out there, consistently ranked #1 in The World’s Most Valuable Brands, and various other lists. It’s not even a necessity to rank Apple, because Apple has become a household name. Apple has the simplest marketing strategy in the world--and it works!
How does it work? Using the Apple model, keep your marketing simple and always have your customer in mind. As an Amazon seller, you’re building a brand; and there’s much to take away from Apple’s advertising in order to grow your brand from the outside in.
KEEP YOUR MARKETING SIMPLE
When Apple came out with the iPod in 2001, it was a revolutionary product. Together with the product, they came up with a promotion strategy that was socially-relevant, innovative, and simple: “iPod People.” There were silhouettes of people dancing to music, the iPod People.
They were able to state their message: the small iPod would get rid of having to deal with disc-changing and big CDs and CD players. This was different. This was hip. This was cool.
This was a whole lifestyle marketing strategy, coinciding with their previous “Think Different” ad campaigns. Apple has built itself on the motto, Think Different, and it worked. Consumers, fans and cult members (yes, they call themselves “cult members”) of Apple saw something revolutionary in the Apple ads: a lifestyle change. If you thought different, you’d be changing your whole mentality.
Mahatma Gandhi, Martin Luther King Jr., Albert Einstein, and the other revolutionaries featured in the Think Differently video were not using Apple products, obviously, but they were part of the ad campaign regardless--because they thought differently. As an Amazon seller, you’d want to think differently as well. Here’s how:
Start with the Why
Simon Sinek created a simple model for marketing which he calls The Golden Circle: Why, How, What.
He says companies usually say What, How, and Why, in that order, from the outside in. But the most inspiring organizations and leaders communicate from the inside out: Why, How, What.
Why? Because the why outlines your purpose and your beliefs. When you start with the why, you are assuring your consumers that you are part of their own beliefs and values.
Take Apple for example, according to Sinek: We believe in challenging the status quo, we think differently. We just happen to make computers.
We started believing we wanted to think the same as Apple, and of course, along with that, we wanted to buy their iPods, computers, laptops, and IPhones.
Apple simplified everything, got rid of the jargon, and made it relatable: You’re either with us or not. You either think differently or you don’t. You’re either hip and cool, or you’re not. We see this later on with the I Am a Mac ad campaign.
The Takeaway for Amazon sellers
If you’re an Amazon seller, make sure to start with the why. Your purposes and beliefs should go first, rather than just what you’re selling.
Make sure to know your purpose and to outline your value proposition first, before you come up with a marketing strategy.
Consumers within the Apple market went with a whole lifestyle change, and that built trust with the brand. If you’re going for a total makeover, you’re not just going to buy one thing to change your image, you go for the whole package.
The Apple promotional strategy knew a key to success--Truly think different from the rest. Be a visionary. This way, you can grow your brand to something bigger than just pushing products.
DO WHAT OTHERS CAN’T DO AND DO IT WELL
What Others Can’t Do
In 2001, Apple researched the market and saw that there was a vacuum in the market for a music device in the nineties that integrates all music from different CDs into one.
Back then, if you can still remember, people were still using big bulky CDs and DVD players and such. Apple did it again in 2007 for the iPhone. We all had alarm clocks; we all had music devices; we all had phones. But what did Apple do? They made it all part of one device.
How did they do it? They saw what there was no competition for. They did what others could not do by integrating what others did well into their own unique combination.
Apple was not the first to make a music device, but what they did was to make a music device that combined every single CD in your closet. Their first target market: the music-lovers. If you watch Steve Jobs talk about his target market and the first Apple iPod, you can see how revolutionary Apple truly was.
Music companies, telecommunications companies, and computer networks, all were integrated into the first iPhone. But these same companies were also Apple’s competitors. They just didn’t have what Apple had: a quick and simple integration.
Doing What Others Can’t Do Well
It wasn’t, for the consumer, about the mundane task of buying a computer, or a phone or a music device. It was about buying into a lifestyle, and Apple advertising made sure of that. Another Apple ad was the “I Am a Mac” campaign, in which you saw Apple doing what others can’t do, and doing it well.
I am Mac, says the Mac guy, then lists all the great things about a Mac. I am a PC says the PC guy, and lists all the things about the PC (usually the problems that PCs run into). So the Mac guy is a trendy millennial back before millennials were a thing. The PC guy is a middle-aged man in a business suit. Who will you be? Apple is saying.
The Takeaway for Amazon sellers
Amazon sellers can help grow their brand the same way, by scoping out the competition and seeing what they do differently. This way, a clear comparison can be made from your brand and another. Doing what others can’t do and doing it well will help you stand out from the rest, as your own bonafide brand.
UNDERSTAND YOUR TARGET CONSUMER
Going into a new age, Apple probably has a new market penetration strategy that differs from the past. They now use social media outlets such as Twitter, etc. They’ve had effective eCommerce marketing campaigns as well, such as ads on their website, Youtube, and Netflix.
Through the years, they’ve added a new digital marketing strategy and content marketing strategy for going green and being environmentally-friendly. They are able to relate, as always, to the growing number of consumers online, with their key marketing goals.
We don’t use iPods anymore, but we still buy Apple products. But their distributing strategy for the iPod was the same as for other products such as the iPhone, with a goal of reaching as many people as possible.
THE TAKEAWAY BITES FROM APPLE
Apple advertising strategies made us believe that it wasn’t just an iPod we were buying, it was to be a part of the revolution that was Apple. We don’t even notice that we’ve put our iPods away, because we’re still so caught up buying the newest iPhone.
Keep your marketing simple--start with the why. Do what others can’t do and do it well. Understand your values and your target consumer. For Apple, that’s the savvy, young, socially-aware consumer and everyone who wants to be that. Apple made us all want to be that, through their Think Differently campaign and their I Am a Mac campaign.
As an Amazon seller that’s growing your brand, it won’t just be about staying at the top of the charts on Amazon (though you’ll want that, of course). But you’ll want most of all to stay on top of your consumer’s values, your consumer’s needs, and thus, your consumer’s priority.
The absolute take-way from Apple’s marketing techniques: Be another Mahatma Gandhi, Albert Einstein, or, Steve Jobs.
You know how revolutionary Apple is, but are you ready to make their marketing strategy work for you? If so, MarketplaceOps is here for you. We are a team of online marketplaces and eCommerce experts who have been in the industry for many years. We’re willing to help you every step of the way. If you have more questions about our article or if you simply need help in starting or handling your Amazon business, just reach out to us by sending an email or clicking the link here: